What is a heart murmur?

A heart murmur is a sound from the heart between heartbeats that can be heard through a stethoscope. Heart murmurs can either be innocent (harmless) or abnormal.


Children with innocent heart murmurs usually have no other signs or symptoms of heart problems. An abnormal heart murmur can be the sign of a heart condition, such as a congenital heart defect.


If your child’s doctor hears a heart murmur, he or she will analyze the murmur for loudness, pitch and duration to determine if it’s innocent or abnormal. He or she may also order other tests to confirm, and, if so, will refer you to a pediatric cardiologist.


Although heart murmurs don’t need treatment on their own, if an underlying cardiac condition is causing the heart murmur, it may need treatment.

Learn more about Pediatric Cardiology services at Boston Children’s Health Physicians.

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Getting a second opinion from one of our clinicians will give you the peace of mind that comes from knowing your child’s health is in expert hands. Simply call 844-463-2247 to make an appointment with one of our specialists.